Penguin Disappearing – Creation Moments

King Penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus) 5 by Ian

King Penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus) by Ian

“And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.” Genesis 1:26

Penguins are disappearing. Don’t worry – it’s not all of them that are disappearing. But the world’s largest colony of king penguins appears to be only 10% the size it was 50 years ago.

The colony, which lives on Île aux Cochons in the southern Indian Ocean, is quite difficult to count. Nevertheless, surveys over the years have shown that it has shrunk dramatically. Reasons given for the decimation include climate change and outbreaks of diseases such as avian cholera.

Penguins are among our favorite animals. Many of us, when we go to the zoo, will make our way quickly to see the penguins. We love to see the endearing, adorable way they walk and then marvel at their grace as they “fly” through the water. Some species of penguins have remarkable habits. One unsubstantiated urban myth about penguins in the Falkland Islands suggests that they watch the overflying planes of the Royal Air Force so intently that they eventually fall over backwards! One comedian complained about the Emperor Penguins, saying that they have the ability to make us feel complete failures as fathers.

Of course, not all penguins are dying out. We are referring to one colony of one species. But does it matter? The answer must be that, yes, we ought to have a concern. We are used to opposing climate change mythology and, therefore, sometimes go to the other extreme, forgetting that God gave us a stewardship to look after this world and protect it.

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for the stewardship that You gave the human race over creation. We pray for those involved in conservation, that You would raise up those whose work is guided fully by You. Amen.

Ref: CNRS. “Largest king penguin colony has shrunk nearly 90%.” ScienceDaily, 30 July 2018. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/07/180730120408.htm>. Image: CC BY-SA 3.0.

Copyright © 2019 Creation Moments, Inc. PO Box 839, Foley, MN 56329 800-422-4253   http://www.creationmoments.com

Penguins - Gentoo Front-King Middle-Rockhoopers Back

Penguins – Gentoo Front – King Middle – Rockhoopers Back by Lee

Disappearing Penguins – Creation Moments

Penguin Eggs Tragedy by Dr. Johnson

Ian’s Bird of the Week – King Penguin

Bird of the Bible Photos – Hoopoe

Eurasian Hoopoe (Upupa epops) by Nikhil Devasar

“The stork, the heron of any variety, the hoopoe, and the bat.” (Deuteronomy 14:18 AMP)

Hoopoe Feeding Young ©©Dvir Lotan from Israel

Hoopoe Feeding Young ©©Dvir Lotan from Israel

“The stork, all kinds of heron, the hoopoe, and the bat.” (Leviticus 11:19 AMP)

This bird is on the “Do Not Eat List.”

Birds of the Bible – Hoopoe

Birds of the Bible

Wordless Birds

Rabbit Chasing Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Cranes in side yard – The Guard Sandhill watching

“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:” (2 Timothy 4:7 KJV)

Dan and I have been re-reading “Things I Have Learned” by Dr. Bob Jones, Sr. One of his messages was about “Rabbit Chasers.” It has to do with a “Possum” dog getting sidetracked by a Rabbit. [More about that later.]

The day after reading that part, I was looking out our kitchen window and spotted the four Sandhill Cranes in our side yard. They come by frequently. It is a mom, dad, and two juveniles.

About that time a rabbit appeared close to the house next door. [He was in our front yard on Easter Morning when we back out on the way to church. Yeah! The Easter Bunny!, I told Dan.] The rabbit was minding his own business when the “guard” Sandhill took out after him. Now, I call that Sandhill a “rabbit chaser.”

Sandhill Crane with Wings Spread – Threatening ©Maria Michell Pixabay

This is not the first time we have watched a Sandhill take-off after an animal. Years, ago, we were watching several Sandhill Cranes walking through the travel-trailer park where we were staying. A small kitten, thought he would “take on” one of these tall birds. The Sandhill opened up his wings, making him look “really big” and took two steps toward the small cat. Haven’t seen a cat run that fast in a long time. :)

Back to the book and the “Rabbit Chasers.” To shorten the message, it was about what a good “Possum” dog does, compared to a “Rabbit Chaser.” A good dog will go over hill and dale, through water, etc. and never gets off of the trail until he either trees his opossum, or he loses it. On the other hand, a dog that starts on the scent of his prey, comes across the trail of a rabbit, and changes course to follow the rabbit, is a “Rabbit Chaser.”

This Dog Adopted His Opossum. Back to the drawing board.

Dr. Bob takes that story and tells the students in chapel, to finish what they started. [“Finish The Job” was another of his saying.] The student starts college and then they meet a girl or boy, they start wavering about finishing. There are other things to get us off-track also. [Sound familiar] He mentions other things, but basically, he was challenging the students to stay on course and finish what they started. A very good lesson for all of us. I had hoped to find an online version to share a link to, but it doesn’t seem to be available. The book is still available. Things I Have Learned at the school.

“The Son of God came all the way from heaven to this earth. I am speaking reverently. He got on the trail of His Father’s will. Everything tried to stop Him, but He stayed on the trail.” … “One day He hung on the cross in agony and blood. After awhile He cried, ‘It is finished.’ He stayed on the trail. He never got off. He said, ‘I came to do My Father’s will, and now it is done.’ He died for us. And my Bible says, ‘He shall see the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied.’ ..”You will never be happy off the trail.” [From Things I Have Learned, p106.]

There is much more I would love to share about that message, but, I’ll leave you to read the book if you would like.

“But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.” (Acts 20:24 KJV)

Here are some of his many sayings that Dr Bob Jones Sr. shared with students [of which we both were at one time].

  • “It is a sin to do less than your best.”
  • “The door to the room of success swings on the hinges of opposition.”
  • “It is no disgrace to fail; it is a disgrace to do less than your best to keep from failing.”
  • “God will not do for you what He has given you strength to do for yourself.”
  • “Don’t sacrifice the permanent on the altar of the immediate.”

Wholesome Words – Chapel Sayings

Wholesome Words

Sharing The Gospel

 

Avian – Happy Mother’s Day

Today is Mother’s Day here in America. I wonder if the beautiful, hard-working avian mother’s have a special day. Maybe, it is the day the little one fledge and finally have “Flown The Coop.”

Seriously, I would like to wish all of my readers a Happy Mother’s Day with this little tribute.

First, the Momma bird lays her eggs:

“Let your father and your mother be glad, And let her who bore you rejoice.” (Proverbs 23:25 NKJV)

Second, momma has to sit on the eggs for awhile:

“For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.” (Matthew 12:50 NKJV)

Third, the little ones start to appear:

“Honour thy father and thy mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.” (Matthew 19:19 KJV)

Fourth, those little birds get hungry:

“Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;)” (Ephesians 6:2 KJV)

Fifth, they mature (juveniles) and eventually Fly The Coop:

Avian mother’s are finished with that batch. Unlike human mothers whose work has just begun, and will continue through every stage of their children’s lives, even into their grandchildren’s lives.

Happy Mother’s Day!!

“Listen to your father who begot you, And do not despise your mother when she is old.” (Proverbs 23:22 NKJV)

“A wise son makes a father glad, But a foolish man despises his mother.” (Proverbs 15:20 NKJV)

Birdman of Chennai India – BBC

Rose-ringed Parakeet (Psittacula krameri) In Chennai India

My friend, Pastor Pete, sent me this video and thought I would share it. Chennai has been written about before by our beloved a j mithra, who has gone on to heaven. He was from Chennai. I wonder whether he knew about this. Most likely, since he loved birds and birdwatching.

This gentleman in India spends about 40% of his income to feed the birds. Many of them that feed are the Rose-ringed Parakeets. I am sure the word has gotten out and other species of parakeets come to this buffet.

“Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” (Genesis 1:26 NKJV)

Dominion does not mean control over the birds, but to watch out for them. That is what this man is doing to help these birds.

Rose-ringed Parakeet (Psittacula krameri) In Chennai India

Hope you enjoyed watching this video. You might stop by A J Mithra’s part of the blog and read some of his articles. He loved birds and  most of all, he loved the Lord. Below are just a few of his articles:

a j mithra – List of all

The Feet
World Sparrow Days
Azores Bullfinch and the Holly Tree…
Hermit Warbler – The Worshiper..
Worthen’s Sparrow – Lost, but found..
Ovenbirds – Ground Singers
Master Builder’s Master Builders

Avian and Attributes – Step

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Nikhil Devasar

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Nikhil Devasar

“The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.” (Psalms 37:23 KJV)

STEP, v.i. [Gr., the foot. The sense is to set, as the foot, or move probably to open or part, to stretch or extend.]
1. To move the foot; to advance or recede by a movement of the foot or feet; as, to step forward, or to step backward.
2. To go; to walk a little distance; as, to step to one of the neighbors.
3. To walk gravely, slowly or resolutely.
To step forth, to move or come forth.
To step in or into,
1. To walk or advance into a place or state; or to advance suddenly in John 5.
2. To enter for a short time. I just stepped into the house for a moment.

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Peter Ericsson

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Peter Ericsson

Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.” (Psalms 119:133 KJV)

STEP, v.t.
1. To set, as the foot.

“My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined.” (Job 23:11 KJV)

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Africaddict

STEP, n. [G., to form a step or ledge.]
1. A pace; an advance or movement made by one removal of the foot.
6. Gradation; degree. We advance improvement step by step, or by steps.
7. Progression; act of advancing.
8. Footstep; print or impression of the foot; track.
9. Gait; manner of walking. The approach of a man is often known by his step.
10. Proceeding; measure; action.
The reputation of a man depends of the first steps he makes in the world.

Steppe Eagle

STEP, STEPP, n. In Russ, an uncultivated desert of large extent. [Webster Dictionary 1828, with editing]

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Peter Ericsson

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Peter Ericsson

The steppe eagle (Aquila nipalensis) is a bird of prey. Like all eagles, it belongs to the family Accipitridae. It was once considered to be closely related to the non-migratory tawny eagle (Aquila rapax) and the two forms have previously been treated as conspecific.

It is:

  • about 62–81 cm (24–32 in) in length
  • wingspan of 1.65–2.15 m (5.4–7.1 ft).
  • Females, weighing 2.3–4.9 kg (5.1–10.8 lb), are slightly larger than males
  • Males, 2–3.5 kg (4.4–7.7 lb)

This is a large eagle with brown upperparts and blackish flight feathers and tail. This species is larger and darker than the tawny eagle, and it has a pale throat which is lacking in that species. Immature birds are less contrasted than adults, but both show a range of variation in plumage colour. The eastern subspecies A. n. nipalensis is larger and darker than the European and Central Asian A. n. orientalis.

The call of the steppe eagle sounds like a crow barking, but it is rather a silent bird.

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Nikhil Devasar

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Nikhil Devasar

The steppe eagle breeds from Romania east through the south Russian and Central Asian steppes to Mongolia. The European and Central Asian birds winter in Africa, and the eastern birds in India. It lays 1–3 eggs in a stick nest in a tree. Throughout its range it favours open dry habitats, such as desert, semi-desert, steppes, or savannah.

It is found in south-eastern Pakistan especially in Karachi. Large numbers are seen at certain places such as Khare in Nepal during migration.

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Nikhil Devasar

Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) by Nikhil Devasar

The steppe eagle’s diet is largely fresh carrion of all kinds, but it will kill rodents and other small mammals up to the size of a hare, and birds up to the size of partridges. It will also steal food from other raptors. Like other species, the steppe eagle has a crop in its throat allowing it to store food for several hours before being moved to the stomach. [Wikipedia, with editing]

“For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.” (1 Peter 2:21-24 KJV)

More Avian and Attributes

Birds whose first name starts with “S”

Good News

Heaven’s Crowns and Birds With Crowns

Black Crowned Crane (Balearica pavonina pavonina) (West African) Brevard Zoo by Lee

“The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying, Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.” (Revelation 4:10-11 KJV)

Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa) ©Wiki

Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa) ©Wiki

“And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown,….” (Revelation 14:14 KJV)

White-crowned Sparrow ©WikiC

“Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.” (James 1:12 KJV)

Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula) by BirdingPix

Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula) by BirdingPix

“For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming?”
(1 Thessalonians 2:19 KJV)

Red-crowned Amazon (Amazona viridigenalis) by Daves BirdingPix

Red-crowned Amazon (Amazona viridigenalis) by Daves BirdingPix

“Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.” (2 Timothy 4:8 KJV)

Green-crowned Brilliant and Purple-throated Mountain-Gem by Ray

“But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man, that thou visitest him? Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands:” (Hebrews 2:6-7 KJV)

Grey-crowned Rosy Finch (Leucosticte tephrocotis) by Ian

Grey-crowned Rosy Finch (Leucosticte tephrocotis) by Ian

“And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.” (1 Peter 5:4 KJV)

Yellow-crowned Night Heron (Nyctanassa violacea) by Dan

Yellow-crowned Night Heron (Nyctanassa violacea) by Dan

With all these birds with crowns, maybe the Lord wants to remind us to think about these verses, and do what they say. Then we will have some crowns to cast at Jesus’ feet when we get to heaven.

And a few more birds with crowns:

See the series about the Heaven’s Foundation, Streets, Beauty

Gideon

Carrier Pigeon Prompts Rescue of WWII Airmen Floating in the North Sea, Despite Carrying No Written Message!

BRITISH  AIRMEN LEAVING NORWAY, PLUNGE INTO  THE  NORTH SEA: WWII CARRIER  PIGEON  TO  THE  RESCUE !

(Carrier Pigeon Prompts Rescue of WWII  Airmen Floating in the North Sea, Despite Carrying No Written Message!)

Dr. James J. S. Johnson

And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.   (Luke 9:58)

Pigeons know where their nests are;  you can trust them to find their way home!

On February 23rd of AD1942, after an aerial mission over Norway, a shot-up and failing Royal Air Force Beaufort Bomber was trying to return home, but was forced to “ditch” at sea.  The North Sea waters were dangerously cold, freezing (although because these were salt-waters they remained liquid).  The 4 floating survivors were more than 100 miles from home, unable to radio their location to their friend back in Scotland.  Would they die, soon, in the frigid North Sea?

Thanks, providentially, to a Carrier Pigeon (a variety of Rock Dove), the 4 airmen were rescued, without the bird carrying a written S.O.S. message  —  but how?

Winkie-Pigeon-and-her-grateful-crew.WWII-rescue

WINKIE,  Royal Air Force pigeon  # NEHU 40 NSL  

and her rescued & grateful WWII Royal Air Force crew

Here is the amazing report, provided by the British Broadcasting Corporation’s Christopher Sleight (in a BBC article titled “The Pigeon that Saved a World War II Bomber Crew” [ posted  AD2012-02-23 at https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-tayside-central-17138990 ].

Seventy years ago a carrier pigeon performed the act of “heroism” that saw it awarded the animal’s equivalent of the Victoria Cross – the Dickin Medal. It was the first of dozens of animals honoured by veterinary charity PDSA during World War II.

On 23 February 1942, a badly damaged RAF bomber ditched into the North Sea. The crew were returning from a mission over Norway, but their Beaufort Bomber had been hit by enemy fire and crashed into the sea more than 100 miles from home. Struggling in freezing waters – unable to radio an accurate position back to base [because the plane crashed so quickly] – the four men faced a cold and lonely death.

But as the aircraft went down, the crew had managed to salvage their secret weapon – a carrier pigeon. The blue chequered hen bird, called Winkie [“NEHU 40 NSL”], was set free in the hope it could fly home to its loft in Broughty Ferry, near Dundee [on the northern bank of River Tay, which flows from Scotland’s eastern coast into the North Sea], and so alert air base colleagues to their predicament.

But Winkie did make it home, after flying 120 miles [to Broughty Ferry], and was discovered, exhausted and covered in oil, by owner George Ross, who immediately informed RAF Leuchars in Fife.

The pigeon was not carrying a message, but the RAF were able to calculate [i.e., approximate] the position of the downed aircraft, using the time difference between the plane’s ditching and the arrival of the bird [to its loft nest] – taking into account the wind direction and even the impact of the oil [spoilage] on Winkie’s feathers, to her flight speed. A rescue mission was launched and the men were found within 15 minutes.

Elaine Pendlebury, from the PDSA [People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals], said the carrier pigeon had been released as a “last ditch stand” when the crew realised they had no other options. “I find it very, very moving really. These people would have died without this pigeon message coming through,” said Ms Pendlebury.

Winkie became the toast of the air base, with a dinner held in her honour. A year later, she became the first animal to receive the Dickin Medal – named after PDSA’s founder Maria Dickin – for “delivering a message under exceptional difficulties [and so contributing to the rescue of an Air Crew while serving with the RAF in February 1942]”.

During World War II, carrier pigeons were routinely carried by RAF bombers for this very eventuality, though in an era before GPS and satellite locator beacons, rescue was far from certain. More than 60 animals have since received the award, including 18 dogs, three horses and one cat. But pigeons still rule the [Dickin Medal] roost, with 32 being given medals, all between 1943 and 1949.

[Quoting from Corporation’s Christopher Sleight, “The Pigeon that Saved a World War II Bomber Crew” [BBC News (BBC.com, Tayside & Central Scotland column), AD2012-02-23 at https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-tayside-central-17138990 ].

PigeonService-RAF-WWII.ImperialWarMuseum

Homing Pigeons used by Royal Air Force, WWII   (Imperial War Museum photo)

It is reported that “more than 250,000 carrier pigeons were used [by Great Britain’s military] in World War II. They were called the National Pigeon Service and were relied on heavily to transport secret messages.” [Quoting https://its-interesting.com/2012/11/01/wwii-carrier-pigeon-delivers-message/ .]

WWII-Pigeon-Service-RAF-FeatheryPhotographyBlog

WWII RAF Pigeon Service   (Public Domain / Feathery Photography blog)

But how is it that birds, like the carrier pigeon, can fly so efficiently that humans can predict their flight-path, even without GPS, and can do so with such dependability that such predictions (i.e., calculations that approximate the location where someone can be found) can succeed in 4 saving lives, precariously afloat in wintery North Sea waters, more than 100 miles from Scotland?

In short, God has programmed many types of birds, especially migratory birds, with bioengineering traits that equip it for sophisticated and precise navigation, over lands and oceans.

This logistical miracle, of God’s bioengineering providence, has been quantified by Dr. Werner Gitt (in AD1986), in his study of birds such as PLOVERS.

Pacific-Golden-Plover.NationalAudubonSociety

Pacific Golden Plover   (Nat’l Audubon Society photo)

After quoting Psalm 104:24, Dr. Gitt indicates that he will illustrate one of God’s creative works of wisdom, the flight of migratory birds.

If we take a closer look at this phenomenon, we encounter two miracles: energy and navigation.

 The miracle of energy

Every process, whether in physics, technology or biology, adheres strictly to the law of conservation of energy; that is to say, any work to be done requires a certain amount of energy supplied. The problem facing the migratory bird is that of taking with it sufficient fuel (= fat) to complete its journey. To ensure the necessary flying capacity, the bird must be of as light a build as possible. Excess weight is to be avoided at all costs. Likewise, use of fuel has to be as efficient as possible. How, then, did the Creator make the fuel last so long without refilling? The first step is choosing the most economical cruising speed. Should the bird fly too slowly, it would consume too much fuel simply to stay airborne. If it flies too quickly, it wastes too much energy in overcoming air resistance. Thus we see that there is a definite minimum for the consumption of fuel. If the bird knew about this speed, it would be able to fly as efficiently as possible. Depending on the aerodynamic construction of the rump and wings, the optimal speed is different for each bird (e.g. laughing gull 45 kilometers per hour, budgerigar 41.6 km/h). It is a known fact that birds gear themselves exactly to this energy-saving speed. How do they know? It is one of many unsolved ornithological puzzles.

We want to examine more closely the energy problem of the golden plover (Pluvialis dominica fulva). This bird migrates from Alaska to Hawaii for the winter. Its nonstop flight takes it across the open sea where there is no island en route; in addition, the bird cannot swim, so that a stop for rest is impossible. This flight of over 4000 km (depending on its starting point) involves an incredible 250,000 consecutive wing beats and lasts 88 hours. The bird’s starting weight is G0 = 200 grams, of which 70 grams are stored as layers of fat to be used as fuel. It is known that the golden plover converts 0.6% per hour of its current body weight (p= 0.006/h) into kinetic energy and heat.

For the first hour of flight, it therefore needs x1 = G0 p = 200 (0.006) = 1.2 grams of fat.

Thus, at the beginning of the second hour, it weighs only
G0 x1 = 200 – 1.2 = 198.8 g, so that it uses slightly less fat for the second hour:
x2 = (G0 – x1) p = G1 (p) = (198.8) (0.006) = 1.193 g
x3 = (G0 – x1 – x2) = G2 (p) = (197.6) (0.006) = 1.186 g
and for the 88th hour of flight the fuel consumption has fallen to
x88 = (G0 – x1 – x2 – x3 . . . x87) p = G87 (p)

Now we will calculate how much the bird weighs at the end of the flight. Its body weight at the end of each hour is given by the reduction due to the fat consumption:
1st hour: G1 = G0 – x1 = G0 – G0 p = G0 (1 – p)
2nd hour: G2 = G1 – x2 = G1 – G1 p = G1 (1 – p) = G0 (1 – p)2
3rd hour: G3 = G2 – x3 = G2 – G2 p = G2 (1 – p) = G0 (1 – p)3
and so on. Finally at the 88th hr: G88 = G0 (1 – p)88

For the sake of simplicity, we have performed the above calculation in steps of 1 hour. We could have used a more accurate differential equation, but the result would have differed only negligibly from the above solution. Using the simpler method, and putting in the proper values in Equation (8), the bird’s weight after the 88th hour is given by G88 = 200 (1 – 0.006)88 = 117.8 grams.

The total fuel consumption is then the difference from the initial weight:

G0 – G88 = 200 -117.8 = 82.2 grams.

This value is distinctly more than the available 70 grams! The bird may not go below the limit of 130 g (Fig. 1). In spite of flying at the speed which minimizes his fuel consumption, the bird has not enough fuel to reach Hawaii. To find the number of hours that the fuel is sufficient for, we find using GZ = G0 (1 – p)Z = 200 – 70 = 130 g that the 70 g of fat are used up after Z = 72 hours, which means that after 81% of the projected time (i.e. a good 800 km before the end) the bird crashes into the sea.

Have we miscalculated, or has the Creator not, as we thought, designed and equipped the bird properly? Neither: the Creator’s work leaves us amazed. The clue is the motto: “optimal use of energy through information.” He gave the bird an important piece of information as well:

“Do not fly singly (curve GE) but in V-formation (curve GK).  In V-formation you will save 23% of your energy and reach your winter quarters safely.”

Fig. 1 also shows the curve GK, the rate of weight loss when flying in V-formation.

After 88 hours this would normally leave 6.8 g of fat in hand. This remaining fuel reserve is not superfluous, however, but has been included by the Creator so that the bird reaches its goal even with a contrary wind. The extremely low fuel consumption of p = 0.6% of the total weight per hour is even more astonishing when one considers that the corresponding values for man-made mechanical flying machines are many times larger (helicopter p = 4 to 5%, jet p = 12%). For anyone who does not regard these finely adjusted processes as the work of a Creator, the following questions remain unanswered:

  • How does the bird know how much fat is necessary?

  • How does it arrange to have this amount just before the journey?

  • How does the bird know the distance and the specific rate of fuel consumption?

  • How does the bird know the way?

  • How does it navigate?

[Quoting Werner Gitt, “The Flight of Migratory Birds”, Acts & Facts, volume 15, (Sept. 1986).   NOTE:  Figure 1, not shown here, is an illustration of the flight of the golden plover from Alaska to Hawaii (geographical route, curves of the fuel consumption during the bird’s flight.]

Pacific-Golden-Plover.PPT-migration-map

The analysis by Dr. Werner Gitt, of the plover’s amazing migratory flight, continues.

As well as the aforementioned (East Siberian) golden plover, there is also the North American golden plover. This bird also flies in a dazzling nonstop performance straight across the Atlantic Ocean from the coasts of Labrador to North Brazil. Whereas the western breed flies the same course for both journeys, the North American golden plover chooses different routes for Autumn and Spring. The return flight from the pampas of South America crosses Central America and the United States to Canada. The following equally incredible flight performances are recorded for:

  • the Japanese snipe (Capella hardtwickii): 5,000 km flight from Japan to Tasmania
  • the needle-tailed swift of Eastern Siberia (Chaetura caudacuta): flight from Siberia to Tasmania
  • the American sandpipers (e.g. Calidris melanotos = pectoral sandpiper): 16,000 km flight from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego.

The navigational miracle

The famous Danish ornithologist, Finn Salomonsen, has this to say about a bird’s orientation during migration: “The bird’s ability to find its way during migration is surely the greatest mystery. Seldom has another question given so much cause for theorizing and speculation as this one.”

Indeed, this navigational achievement, performed without complex boards of instruments, compass and map and under constantly changing conditions, including sun position, wind direction, cloud cover and the diurnal cycle is an incomparable miracle.

Even a slight diversion off course whilst crossing the ocean would mean certain death in the open sea for migrating land birds, as we discovered in the case of the golden plover. Keeping exactly on course is not a question of trial and error.

The vast majority of migrating birds would never reach their destination without navigational methods, and no species could survive such an overwhelming loss rate; thus any suggestion that evolution has played a part here must be totally dismissed. Also the suggestion that young birds learn the way flying with their parents carries little weight, as many species fly solo. It is thought, then, that migratory birds have an instinctive sense of direction like a compass, which makes it possible for them to orientate themselves and thus keep flying in a certain direction. Salomonsen bases his theory about the sense of direction on his study of two kinds of small birds from West Greenland, both of which fly south in autumn. The stonechat(Saxicola torquata) and the snow bunting (Plectrophenox nivalis) share a common homeground and often begin their southward journey at the same time. Once the south of Greenland is reached, however, their ways separate: whereas the snow bunting continues his journey southward to winter in America, the stonechat turns southeast to follow a course over the Atlantic to Western Europe and North Africa. Each bird has a specific sense of direction which determines its migration pattern. Displacement experiments have been carried out with various migratory birds which showed detailed results about the precision of their navigational capabilities: a most remarkable test involving two species of tern (Sterna fuscata and Anous stolidus) and their nesting places in the Tortugas Islands in the Gulf of Mexico, was one such experiment. The birds were shipped in different directions and set free on the open sea. Although they were freed at distances ranging from 832 to 1368 km from their nests over parts of the sea which were completely unfamiliar to them, within a few days, most of the terns returned almost directly to their eggs and young on the Tortugas Islands. The longest disorientation experiment carried out to date was probably one involving a Manx shearwater (Peffinus puffinus) which was taken from its nest on Skokholm Island in Wales to Boston, USA. It arrived back at its nest in 12 days, 12 hours and 31 minutes after a 5,000 km nonstop transatlantic flight. A large number of disorientation experiments has been carried out on homing pigeons, in particular, and it is their navigational achievements which have been most thoroughly researched and documented. Salomonsen, writing about this breathtaking navigational feat, says:

“Even when birds were anaesthetised for the outward journey, or if their cages were made to rotate continuously so that their orientation was constantly changing, they were just as able to find their way home as were the control birds. Therefore there can be no doubt that birds have a special sense of geographical position, i.e. a real navigational sense. The nature of this instinct remains a mystery; even more so, the location of the relevant sense organ.”

The birds’ capabilities extend beyond the bounds of our imagination. They can determine their homeward course over long distances, even when all possible aids to orientation have been removed during the disorientation journey. They possess the extraordinary faculty of being able, wherever they are, to determine their position relative to their home territory from their immediate surroundings. And this method of determining location, itself not understood even today, is only the beginning; then comes the real problem, namely flight navigation: mere sense of direction is not enough for this.

During flight over wide, windswept stretches of ocean, a tendency to drift off course cannot be avoided. Such drift must be continually compensated for, as in a feedback system in control technology, in order to avoid losing energy by flying a longer route. The Creator equipped the birds with a precise ‘autopilot,’ which apparently is constantly measuring its geographical position and comparing the data with its individually “programmed” destination. In this way an economical, energy-saving and direct flight is guaranteed. Just where this vital system is to be found and how this operating information is coded is known by no one today except the Creator, who made it.

[Quoting Werner Gitt, “The Flight of Migratory Birds”, Acts & Facts, vol. 15, (Sept. 1986).]

Pacific-Golden-Plover.NZ-Birds-Online

Pacific Golden Plover   (NZ Birds Online photo credit)

Dr. Jobe Martin, one the most knowledgeable (and reverent) animal experts alive today,  echoes his own appreciation for the God-given navigational skills displayed by the Pacific Golden Plover’s migration.

Scientists are not certain how the plovers navigate from Alaska to Hawaii and back, since there is no land under their flight path.   Utilization of earth’s magnetic field seems to be the best solution at this point.  Some have suggested that they use the sun and stars.

And how do the young birds find their way to Hawaii [since the first-year plovers migrate to Hawaii weeks after the adults depart south] without an experienced adult guide, weeks after their parents have already flown back to Hawaii?

A one degree mistake in navigation over the more than 4,000 kilometer flight and the birds miss Hawaii completely!  But they never miss!

[Quoting Jobe Martin, THE EVOLUTION OF A CREATIONIST, rev. ed. (Rockwall, TX: Biblical Discipleship Publishers, 2004), page 203, emphasis added.]

More examples of avian navigation genius could be given, e.g., the famous circumpolar migrations of the Arctic Tern.  [See, accord, JJSJ, “Survival of the Fitted:  God’s Providential Programming”, Acts & Facts, 39(10):17-18 (October 2010), posted at https://www.icr.org/article/5663 .]

However, the plumed pilots noted above suffice to illustrate the main idea here: God has given birds navigational programming and skills and physiologies that are providential miracles – which we can see year-round, if we take the time to watch these feathered fliers. They are marvelous miracles in motion, “hidden in plain sight”.  And these birds certainly know where their “home” nests are!

Winkie-carrier-pigeon-WWII.PublicDomainWINKIE, Royal Air Force pigeon # NEHU 40 NSL   (public domain)

><> JJSJ profjjsj@aol.com 


 

Streets of Gold and Golden Birds

 

Gold Nugget ©Zimbabwe

The twelve gates were twelve pearls: each individual gate was of one pearl. And the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass. (Revelation 21:21 NKJV)

With the Precious Stones of the Foundations of the New Jerusalem completed, it is interesting to look at the next verse. The twelve stones were mentioned in Revelation 21:19,20. Yet, in the next verse two more precious stones or minerals are mentioned. Gold and Pearls.

Gold Stone in Ring

In my e-Sword program, the search for “gold” turned up 393 verses found, 451 matches. We won’t quote all of these verse. Gold must be mighty important to be mentioned that many times. When times turn bad, even today, people try to purchase and keep gold, because it is so valuable.

Yet, the Creator of gold, is making streets of pure gold in the New Jerusalem. WOW!! It is going to be beyond description.

Natural Gold Rutilated Quartz Crystal©Amazon

“They are all plain to him who understands, And right to those who find knowledge. Receive my instruction, and not silver, And knowledge rather than choice gold; For wisdom is better than rubies, And all the things one may desire cannot be compared with her.” (Proverbs 8:9-11 NKJV)

There have been quite a few articles about birds with Gold in their name, yet we will show some of them here for you to enjoy God’s Creative Hand at work on these avian wonders.

 

Two Other Gold Bird posts:

Christmas Birds – Silver and Gold 2013

Christmas Birds – Gold 2013

Pastor Jerry Smith – Testimony

 

Hornbills Understand Monkey Talk – Creation Moments

HORNBILLS THAT UNDERSTAND MONKEY

Colossians 1:28

“Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus….”

With the exception of basic messages such as aggression, communication between two entirely different species has seldom been observed among animals in the wild. We know that many animals among the same species give each other specific warnings about an impending danger. However, scientists have never noted one species recognizing the specific warning given by a second species.

Diana monkeys on the Ivory Coast of Africa face two primary threats: leopards and crowned eagles. When one of these threats appears, the spotter gives a very specific bark-like call depending on the type of threat. Of course, the monkeys need to respond differently to each threat, whether it comes from the leopard below or the eagle above. So it helps them to know what they are facing. On the other hand, a bird named the yellow hornbill is threatened only by the crowned eagles. Researchers noted that these birds ignored the monkeys’ warning about the leopards. But when the monkeys signaled danger from the eagle, the yellow hornbill took defensive measures. Researchers confirmed their observations using tape-recorded monkey calls. The researchers were amazed that these birds understood the monkey warnings in an intelligent manner.

Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill (Tockus leucomelas) by Daves BirdingPix

Such intelligence comes from the Creator, Who has given the gift of such intelligence to His creatures in a way that provides for their survival. This shows His loving care for His creation.

Prayer: Father, thank You for Your love, especially for Your forgiving love to me in Your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.

 Ref: Science News, 3/20: 2004, p. 188, “Hornbills know which monkey calls to heed.” Photo: Diana monkey at Cincinnati Zoo. Courtesy of Greg Hume. (CC-BY-SA 3.0)

Creation Moments ©2019 It has been posted before [2016] Used with permission


What an amazing way the Lord has Created His critters. Also, He watches out for them by allowing them to learn from other animals and birds. Many times in Scripture, the Lord tells us to observe the birds to learn from them. Maybe these Hornbills are more perceptive than some humans. God’s Word is clear about His Return and salvation.

Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill (Tockus leucomelas) Cincinnati Zoo 2016 – Lee

Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill – Cincinnati Zoo

Creation Moments Article

Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill

Crowned Eagle – Wikipedia

Different Habitats Fit Different Birds

Different Habitats Fit Different Birds

Dr. James J. S. Johnson

I know all the fowls [i.e., birds] of the mountains; and the wild beasts of the field are Mine.    (Psalm 50:11)

And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay His head.   (Luke 9:58)

Western-Tanager.WildBirdsUnlimited

WESTERN TANAGER perching   (Wild Birds Unlimited photo)

God loves variety, including variety in bird life. In order to facilitate bird variety, unsurprisingly (to creationists), God has provided a variety of avian habitats.

Just as humans have different preferences, for where they choose to live – whether that may be a neighborhood that is urban, suburban, or rural, or even in a wilderness – birds have preferences regarding which “neighborhoods” they prefer to call home.

In fact, this ecological reality is not limited to birds – habitats are diverse for animals in general, just as animals themselves display God-designed biodiversity.

God chose to fill the earth with different kinds of life. All over the world, we see His providence demonstrated in ecological systems. Different creatures live in a variety of habitats, interacting with one another and a mix of geophysical factors—like rain, rocks, soil, wind, and sunlight.

But why does this happen? And how does it happen? These two questions are at the heart of ecology science—the empirical study of creatures interactively living in diverse “homes” all over the world.

Why did God design earth’s biodiversity the way that He did? Two words summarize the answer: life and variety. Even in this after-Eden world, cursed and groaning as it is under the weight of sin and death, we still see a prolific and diversified creation.

God loves life. God is the essence and ultimate origin of all forms and levels of life.

God loves variety. God’s nature is plural, yet one, and He is the Creator of all biological diversity anywhere and everywhere on earth.

Because God loves life and variety, we can understand why God favors different kinds of life forms, causing them to be fruitful—increasing their populations generation after generation.  . . . .

For creatures to successfully “fill the earth,” there must be both population growth and creature diversity within a geographical context—the earth. . . . .

Different Homes for Different Folks

Different types of habitats all over the planet collectively host an ecological smörgåsbord of alternative habitat opportunities. Consider how [countless] examples of very different habitats are filled by aptly “fitted” creatures—providentially prepared creatures living in providentially prepared places. . . . .

Some ecological conditions might work for a world full of just a few kinds of animals and/or plants, but God did not want a monotonous planet. So He designed an earth that could and would host a huge variety of life-form kinds.

Befitting God’s own divine essence—the ultimate source of (and ultimate logic for) all created life and variety—God’s panoramic plan was for many different kinds of creatures to populate and fill His earth.

And because God loves beauty, God even chose to integrate His eye-pleasing artistry into the variety of His creatures and the wide array of their respective habitats.

[Quoting JJSJ, “God Fitted Habitats for Biodiversity”, ACTS & FACTS, 42 (3): 10-12 (March 2013), at https://www.icr.org/article/god-fitted-habitats-for-biodiversity  .]

Northern-Flicker-redshafted.Evergreen-edu

NORTHERN FLICKER  (Red-shafted variety)   —   Evergreen.edu photo credit

For an example of bird with a montane habitat, consider the Northern Flicker, reported in “Want a Home in the Mountains?  Some Birds have One!” [at https://leesbird.com/2015/09/24/want-a-home-in-the-mountains-some-birds-have-one/ ].

Or, for an example of a bird with an https://leesbird.com/2015/09/24/want-a-home-in-the-mountains-some-birds-have-one/, notice the Green Heron, reported in “Flag that Green Heron Nest!” [at https://leesbird.com/2019/02/01/flag-that-green-heron-nest/ ].

Many more examples could be given — see generally www.leesbird.com !

WillowPtarmigan-Alaska-variety.Wikipedia

WILLOW PTARMIGAN  (Alaska variety)   —   Wikipedia photo credit

Scripture alludes to this reality of avian ecology: birds live in different habitats.

Of course, every bird needs to live near a source of freshwater, so brooks and streams, as well as lakes and ponds, are good places to look for birds (1st Kings 17:4).

Some birds prefer mountain habitats (Psalm 50:11; 1st Samuel 26:20; Isaiah 18:6; Ezekiel 39:14; Psalm 11:1).  Other birds prefer the valleys or open fields, including farmlands (Proverbs 30:17; Ezekiel 32:4; Matthew 13:4 & 13:32; Mark 4:4; Luke 8:5).

Ground fowl, such as partridges, live in scrublands, sometimes near bushes that fit their camouflage plumage (Deuteronomy 22:6-7; 1st Samuel 26:20).

Some birds prefer desert wilderness habitats (Psalm 102:6; Isaiah 13:21 & 34:11-15), including rocky places like crags atop high rocky cliffs or in desolate canyons (Jeremiah 48:28 & 49:6; Obadiah 1:3-4; Song of Solomon 2:14; Job 39:27).

Birds are famous for appreciating trees, dwelling in and/or under trees branches (Psalm 104:17; Ezekiel 17:23 & 31:13; Daniel 4:12-14 & 4:21; Luke 13:19).

WesternScrubJay-PinyonPine-Snow.RonDudley

WESTERN SCRUB JAY in snow-adorned evergreen   (Ron Dudley photo)

Some birds seem to prefer to build nests in and around houses and other buildings made by humans (Psalm 84:3 & 102:7), while other birds, such as poultry, live lives of domestication (Numbers 6:10; Proverbs 30:31; 1st Kings 4:23; Nehemiah 5:18; John 2:11-16).

Of course, migratory birds are famous for having a “summer home” and a “winter home”, traveling to and fro twice a year (Jeremiah 8:7; Song of Solomon 2:12).

What variety! With these thoughts in mind, therefore, we can better appreciate the diversity of bird habitats, as we watch (and value) the fine-feathered residents and migrants that frequent our own home neighborhoods.

In other words, we not only identify (and appreciate) birds according to their physical appearances, we can also match their physical needs to their habitats.

Black Skimmer (Rynchops niger niger), Northern subspecies
BLACK SKIMMER with young   (Michael Stubblefield photo)

Accordingly, consider what Dr. Bette J. Schardien Jackson (ornithologist of Mississippi State University, also president of the Mississippi Ornithological Society) says, about differences in avian habitats.

HABITATS. A [bird’s] habitat is an environment – a portion of an ecosystem – that fulfills a bird’s needs for food, water, shelter, and nesting.  If a species habitually chooses a particular habitat – and many do – it is known as a habitat specialist.  Even widespread species may be extremely narrow in their choice of habitat.  For example, the Killdeer is common through most of North America, but within the varied ecosystems of the species’ range it specializes in [i.e., tends to prefer] one habitat:  open areas with patches of bare ground. The Killdeer particularly favors habitats close to bodies of water.  The widespread Blue Jay, in contrast, always requires groves of trees.

Plants are often the most important element in any habitat. Fruit, berries, nuts, sap, and nectar completely satisfy the dietary needs of some birds.  Because plants provide nourishment for insects, they [i.e., the insect-hosting plants] are also essential to insect-eating birds.  Additionally, plants provide various nest sites and shelter from weather and enemies.  In arid environments, plants are an important source of moisture.

Some species are intimately associated with a particular plant. The Kirtland’s Warbler, for example, nests only in young jack pine trees that spring up after a fire.  When the trees grow large enough to shade the scrubby growth beneath, the warblers will no longer use them.  This specific habitat requirement is one reason why the Kirtland’s Warbler is now [i.e., as of AD1988] an endangered species – probably fewer than a thousand remain [in America].  They live on Michigan’s lower peninsula where the U.S. Forest Service periodically burns jack-pine forest to provide the young trees that the birds need.  . . . .

A [bird] species’ habitat is predictable because it has traditionally provided food, nest sites, defendable territories, and conditions conducive to attracting mates [and successfully raising young]. Through our efforts to find birds, we learn about their habitats; we learn both quality and quantity are important.  Pileated Woodpeckers, for example, may require 200 acres of mature forest.  . . . .

In central Wyoming, for example, Western Meadowlarks often place their nests in the midst of a dense patch of prickly-pear cactus where the [cactus] pads are spread close to the ground.  Once you have found one [such] nest, the mental image of that nest helps you to find a dozen more in a short time.  But that [mental] image would be of little help in searching for Western Meadowlark nests in a Nebraska prairie, where there are no cacti, but where the species is just as common.  There each nest is a little tent of grass, often with an opening to the south.

[Quoting Jerome A. Jackson & Bette J. Schardien Jackson, “Avian Ecology”, THE BIRDS AROUND US (Ortho Books, 1986, edited by Robert J. Dolezal),  pages 91 & 93.]

NorthernShoveler.male-and-female
NORTHERN SHOVELER male & female, in wetland waters   (Wikipedia photo)

So, when it comes to choosing a neighborhood, to live in, even the birds have their own preferences!


 

Pearly Gates and Pearly Birds

The twelve gates were twelve pearls: each individual gate was of one pearl. And the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass. (Revelation 21:21 NKJV)

With the Precious Stones of the Foundations of the New Jerusalem completed, it is interesting to look at the next verse. The twelve stones were mentioned in Revelation 21:19,20. Yet, in the next verse two more precious stones or minerals are mentioned; Gold and Pearls.

It says that each gate was all one pearl. As I told a friend recently, I would have liked to see the size of that oyster!

American Oystercatcher (Conserve Wildlife Foundation photo)

Better yet, to see an Oystercatcher pick it up THAT OYSTER, like this one. All kidding aside, can you image a pearl large enough to be a whole gate? That is amazing and only God, the Creator could do that.

We have already produced a few articles about Pearls:

Avian And Attributes – Pearl

Birds in Hymns – He The Pearly Gates Will Open

Freshwater clam with cultivated pearls ©WikiC

Freshwater clam with cultivated pearls ©WikiC

Pearled Treerunner (Margarornis squamiger) ©WikiC

“Heaven has gates; there is a free admission to all that are sanctified; they shall not find themselves shut out. These gates were all of pearls. Christ is the Pearl of great price, and he is our Way to God. The street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass. The saints in heaven tread gold under foot. The saints are there at rest, yet it is not a state of sleep and idleness; they have communion, not only with God, but with one another. All these glories but faintly represent heaven.” [Matthew Henry Concise Commentary]

Pearly-bellied Seedeater (Sporophila pileata) by Dario Sanches

The Parable of the Pearl of Great Value
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls:  Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it. (Matthew 13:45,46 KJV)

None of the birds have Pearl as it’s last name, but here are birds that have Pearl at the beginning of their names:

Pearl Kite (Gampsonyx swainsonii)
Pearl-bellied White-eye (Zosterops grayi)
Pearl-breasted Swallow (Hirundo dimidiata)
Pearled Treerunner (Margarornis squamiger)
Pearl-spotted Owlet (Glaucidium perlatum)
Pearly Antshrike (Megastictus margaritatus)
Pearly Parakeet (Pyrrhura lepida)
Pearly-bellied Seedeater (Sporophila pileata)
Pearly-breasted Conebill (Conirostrum margaritae)
Pearly-breasted Cuckoo (Coccyzus euleri)
Pearly-eyed Thrasher (Margarops fuscatus)
Pearly-vented Tody-Tyrant (Hemitriccus margaritaceiventer)

These birds were included because they like to catch oysters as their name implies:

Oystercatcher, African
Oystercatcher, American
Oystercatcher, Black
Oystercatcher, Blackish
Oystercatcher, Canary Islands
Oystercatcher, Chatham
Oystercatcher, Eurasian
Oystercatcher, Magellanic
Oystercatcher, Pied
Oystercatcher, Sooty
Oystercatcher, South Island
Oystercatcher, Variable

*

Wages or a Gift